Saturday, August 14, 2010

Noted Review: Fantasy Fiction

Anderson, David Paul. The Book of Talyara: The Chronicle of Windwalker. Mustang, OK: Tate Publishing, 2008. 232 Pages. Paper. $14.99. (N)

This is the third book QBR has reviewed by David Paul Anderson. We found his non fiction to be insightful and comforting and his previous fiction to be more faithful and well-written than other Christian spiritual warfare fiction.

At long last, this reviewer finally reached The Book of Talyara: The Chronicle of Windwalker on my review stack. I am a fan of good fantasy fiction, particularly Lewis and Tolkien. I was left unsatisfied in several ways.

This novel lacked the theological precision and clarity of what he has written before. The author refers to evil and good as white and black, with reference to "many religions." (105). Also, the reference to a remnant of the Garden of Eden (spoiler withheld) is theologically dubious and confusing at best (113).

There was too much emphasis on the attractive "form" of  the main character's female companion (143, et al). This reviewer is not alone in that assessment. Even the main human female character had concerns.

I don't mind unusual names for people, places, and imaginary creatures and capabilities. For all the talk about Windwalker, he wasn't enough a part of this tale for this novel to be his chronicle.

I appreciated the metaphor of the Timothy's physical transformation, but what it was a metaphor for was unclear.

Finally, I was a little disappointed by the lack of resolution at the ending. Again, I don't mind setting the stage for a sequel or set of sequels, but I was left unfulfilled at the end.

I urge the author to revisit this work and hopefully continue it in the hopes that it reaches the artistic and theological level of his Plague of Terror.

The Rev. Paul J Cain is Pastor of Immanuel Lutheran Church, Sheridan, Wyoming, Headmaster of Martin Luther Grammar School, a member of the Board of Directors of The Consortium for Classical and Lutheran Education, Wyoming District Worship Chairman, and Editor of QBR.